GOP like gangs on obedience
With the delicacy of neighborhood street gangs, the Republican Party has rejected the re-election of Sen. Richard Lugar (R-Ind.). He works with Democrats to develop passable legislation, and that so offends GOP delinquents they're supporting someone who won't. Both they and street gangs have the same message: "Join up and obey orders -- or else."
The Republican National Committee began cynical abandonment of statesmanlike responsibility long ago. Now underlying their heavy-handedness is fear that they won't fulfill the marching orders of big corporation bullies, thereby experiencing "or else." (Democrats reluctantly tremble). Following every election, we lose.
English playwright Tom Stoppard once said, "It's not the voting that's democracy, it's the counting." Pay attention. America has a vote-counting gang problem. Some proven ballot-count fraud occurred in 2000, and likely in 2004. Diebold computers, protected by patents, can't be examined for vote switching, even where pre-election polls indicate 50-50 splits.
2012's political boorishness is scripted to produce Republican wins that appear to ride on popular will. We need national dialogue about counts -- and why it is that both parties decide who does or doesn't run. But, if your gang demands silence, you'll stay quiet.
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Don't make same mistake twice
A young man recently wrote a letter asking to be convinced why he should not vote to re-elect President Obama.
Our president has numerous negatives, but remember just one thing: $15 trillion national debt.
The results of Obama's wealth redistribution policies, based on hope and change, have been so dreadful and costly that his only available campaign strategy is to attack, blame and divide.
Consider two particular citizen groups -- black conservatives and legal immigrants from communist countries like Cuba -- then ask yourself why they are strongly anti-Obama. These folks could have easily become Democrats but were smarter than that because they discovered the power of self-reliance, personal responsibility and earned riches -- they don't need any government "fairness."
So if you value your freedom and your wealth, no matter how cool you think he is, then Obama is not your friend.
Finally, if you voted for Obama the first time, why would you make the same mistake twice?
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Health law has anti-life mandate
When the Obama administration's health-care financing plan was signed into law, President Obama and Congress promised that funds under the new law would not cover abortions.
This has now proven to be empty rhetoric.
Why? Because the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has mandated that under the health- care law, private health insurance plans must cover the "full range of FDA approved contraception" -- in which category HHS explicitly included the abortion-inducing drug ella.
This mandate includes a so-called "religious employer exemption," yet the exemption is so narrowly defined that most religious schools, colleges, hospitals and charitable organizations serving the public do not qualify. Even an expanded definition of "religious employer" would fail to protect non-religiously affiliated organizations, individuals and even religiously affiliated health insurers whose pro-life consciences are nonetheless violated.
This is an unprecedented attack on the freedom of conscience of millions of Americans, eviscerating their freedom of choice to purchase private insurance that does not violate their ethical, moral or religious objections. I hope all readers will contact their elected representatives in Washington, D.C., and voice outrage over this anti-life mandate.
MARY NAGEL, Decatur, Tenn.
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Drag-queen culture is not glamorous
The Chattanooga Times Free Press has sunk to an all-time low: An article on the "world of drag queens" in the Chattanooga area. I was totally disgusted at the article and its glamorization of the gay "night life." I can say from first-hand experience that the gay lifestyle is anything but a positive and affirming life. I've known my share of men who dressed up as women (drag queen), and their lifestyle is anything but glamorous.
CHRIS DELANEY, Ringgold, Ga.
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Use a system to help the poor
The argument that Jesus expected individuals to take care of poor people comes from Ayn Rand's philosophy, not the teachings of Jesus. This argument has been made by Cal Thomas and local letter writers.
Jesus proclaimed the coming kingdom of God in harmony with the Hebrew prophetic tradition. That tradition criticized unjust economic systems that allowed poor people to suffer while rich people looked away. Jesus lived when Rome occupied Judea. Stories about him and his teachings show poverty was as debilitating and devastating then as it is now. Would Jews and Christians back then believe our welfare system violates the mammon inspired liberty of selfish interest, or would they believe it was a sign that God blessed our nation?
In reality, individuals alone or in church groups cannot help as many poor people as well as a system that collects money nationally, and then invests that money in food and health services. Providing health care is necessary too. Often it is the case that a single parent gets a job. She gets off welfare. Her child gets sick. She is forced by circumstances to return to welfare.
We Christians of all people should pray our welfare system is improved not dismantled.
SUSAN HEARD, Ringgold, Ga.
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War depends on name change
Will President Obama enter a new war to stay in the White House? Only if he changes his last name to "Bush" or "Cheney."
NELSON SULLIVAN, Hixson
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Many reasons to oppose Obama
A letter writer wants to know why he should vote Republican. I don't know because I'm a solid independent. However, I will tell him and others why they should not vote for Mr. Obama:
1. Our economy is terrible, and the so-called "recovery" is extremely weak.
2. The unemployed/underemployed numbers are atrocious.
3. His promises of hope and change have come to nothing. Americans feel more hopeless about the future than they did when he took office.
4. His presidency has only worsened the intense division of Americans that began under the Bush presidency.
5. He has not been a great champion/cheerleader for America. We don't need to be bullies, but we shouldn't be doormats either.
6. His inability to take responsibility is shocking. Anytime something goes wrong he either blames Republicans, Bush or something else.
7. Finally, each opportunity he has had to reconcile problems between races has gone awry, and he has not seriously addressed the problems facing many in the black community including poverty, living conditions, education, crime, etc.
EDWARD LA GUARDIA
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Another change would be welcome
Re: letters of Saturday, April 28. How refreshing the reading of the gentleman who wrote "Page changes an improvement."
Bespeaks cultural class as he compliments your press; furthermore, he kindly makes a suggestion that has been a rant of mine for the longest time.
MARTHA HAGAN, East Ridge